Monday, July 13, 2015

"Two Figures In Dense Violet Night," by Wallace Stevens

"Dusk I," by Michael Swallow

Two Figures In Dense Violet Night
by Wallace Stevens

I had as lief be embraced by the portier of the hotel
As to get no more from the moonlight
Than your moist hand.

Be the voice of the night and Florida in my ear.
Use dusky words and dusky images.
Darken your speech.

Speak, even, as if I did not hear you speaking,
But spoke for you perfectly in my thoughts,
Conceiving words,

As the night conceives the sea-sound in silence,
And out of the droning sibilants makes
A serenade.

Say, puerile, that the buzzards crouch on the ridge-pole
and sleep with one eye watching the stars fall
Beyond Key West.

Say that the palms are clear in the total blue.
Are clear and are obscure; that it is night;
That the moon shines.

[Image above by Michael Swallow]

I have always loved this poem by Wallace really gets cooking after the first stanza. I was reminded of it this week, and had to share it with you.

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